Cisco introduces a cloud-based private 5G-as-a-service solution that allows companies to self-deploy a private 5G network in enterprise environments. In addition, the tech giant is expanding its IoT portfolio and working more closely with Rakuten Symphony.

During MCW 2022, Cisco emphasized an increased commitment to private 5G connectivity and networks. In Cisco’s eyes, private 5G doesn’t replace, but complements existing investments in Wi-Fi and ethernet connectivity.

Private 5G should provide connectivity for many (industrial) usage scenarios. Private 5G connectivity helps companies link physical operations with advanced analytics, AI applications, automation and machine learning (ML).

The solution effectively integrates existing Wi-Fi networks, including support for Wi-Fi 5, 6 and 6E standards. The solution also provides a management portal for extended visibility.

Cisco private 5G-as-a-Service

Cisco’s new private 5G solution consists of IoT sensors and gateways, device management software, monitoring tools and dashboards. In addition, the solution is based on OpenRAN (ORAN) technology, which involves collaboration with ORAN specialists such as JMA and Airspan.

The as-a-Service model is a key benefit, compatible with several global operators and system integrators. The identities of partner companies weren’t disclosed.

Mass IoT

In addition to the arrival of private 5G, Cisco is investing more in its (industrial) IoT solutions. Especially Mass IoT, which described environments with many connected sensors and devices. The tech giant introduced an update to its Cisco IoT Control Center for this purpose. This solution simplifies management and connectivity for large-scale IoT networks.

Presently, the solution provides connectivity for nearly 200 million devices worldwide. The network includes LPWAN, LTE and 5G. This way, customers such as telecom operators and enterprises can choose the best network connectivity for their situation.

The new update is offered as a subscription service. The solution now cuts costs and reduces the complexity of management. According to Cisco, no concessions are made to the quality of connections. Operators already using the update include KPN and BT.

Closer collaboration with Rakuten Symphony

Furthermore, Cisco announced another closer collaboration with Japan’s Rakuten Symphony, a subsidiary of Rakuten Mobile. The two companies will jointly develop cloud-based mobile 4G and 5G networks based on OpenRAN technology to prepare operators for future Internet developments. More specifically, these solutions and applications will combine Cisco’s routing, switching and automation portfolios with Rakuten Symphony’s Open RAN, orchestration technology and suite of Symworld applications.

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